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MailTribune.com
  • What is the deal with that set of legs sticking out of a transmission in Central Point?

  • Newcomers to the Rogue Valley do a double take when they pass Dusty's Transmissions on North Front Street in Central Point.
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  • Newcomers to the Rogue Valley do a double take when they pass Dusty's Transmissions on North Front Street in Central Point.
    A set of legs juts out of a transmission, giving the impression that somebody's stuck inside.
    "It sure drew attention," said owner Dave Duste, whose clever idea has become a landmark in Central Point.
    Duste said when he opened the transmission shop in 1979, it was off the beaten track.
    "There was not a lot of traffic back then," he said. "We had to do something to draw attention."
    One day his son, Matt, who was then 8 years old, came into the shop.
    "He was down here fooling around and crawled into the transmission," remembered Duste. "I said, hey, that's it."
    Welding together some legs from kitchen chairs, he fashioned a frame inside the old Ford transmission. He covered the frame with his son's pants and erected the transmission outside his shop.
    Around Christmas, Duste dresses things up by putting a pair of red pants and black boots on the legs to look like Santa Claus.
    Crater High School students who pass by can't resist jumping up about seven feet to pat the soles of the shoes, said Duste.
    Only once was the transmission stolen, he remembered.
    "One time as a prank kids took it down at Halloween," he said. "But we found it on the side of the shop."
    Duste said he changes the pants and shoes periodically, but that chore has been put on hold for now.
    "There's a bird's nest in the transmission, so we don't want to mess with it," he said.
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